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Dirty Projectors

with Danimals




Our night begins when Sydney's Danimals (fresh from hanging around with Mark Ronson apparently) take to the stage and fire off a bass line so deep that it threatens to tear apart the rattling air-conditioning duct overhead.

  

Danimals create a razor sharp set with moments reminiscent of Battles and The Boredoms, which is built around their two man percussion section.

  

They do a good job of gathering the disparate crowd around them and get a lot of people moving, but they seem a little bit lost on the larger stage (all clumping into one corner) and their sound is let down a bit by some sound difficulties and some off-key vocals.

  

After this entre, the crowd builds so that a full room greets the six members of Brooklyn's Dirty Projectors as they take the stage and get straight down to business – launching into a set that spans most of their latest release, Bitte Orca, as well as a number of songs from their back catalogue.

  

There's a minimum of stage banter tonight – the band sticks mainly to the standard thank-you pleasantries between tracks. They use this time, instead, to swap instruments and reconfigure the band to suit their eclectic sounds – from just two members for the gentle ‘Two Doves' to a full band and full instruments for the sets more brutal moments… when the room fills with white noise and crashing drums.

  

The constant through all this is band leader David Longstreth, who directs traffic through all these comings and goings.

  

What's beautiful about this performance is that Dirty Projectors have the chops to replicate the intricacies of their studio work without sounding clinical and cold. Each element is delivered with equal parts passion and precision – the complex guitar melodies weave amongst each other as they play off the three-part vocal harmonies and the reggae-tinged bass lines.

  

‘Stillness is the Move' retains all of its slinky funk, ‘Cannibal Resource' is just as gorgeous and an extended ‘Temecula Sunrise' manages to replicate the zigs and zags of the original.

  

Most impressive of all, though, are the female vocal harmonies – they're on target all night. At their most magnificent they manage to replicate (almost perfectly) the complex acapella-style vocal gymnastics from ‘Remade Horizon' – a feat that seems all the more incredible in these dark, dark times of T-Pain and the vocoder.

  

It's pretty rare that you can claim to have seen a unique gig, but that seems like an appropriate descriptor for Dirty Projectors' performance tonight.

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